State confirms two 15MHz licences up for grabs in 1800MHz auction

28 Sep 2015

Thailand’s ICT Minister Uttama Savanayana has confirmed the return of an additional 5MHz of spectrum from state-owned CAT Telecom to enable two 15MHz licences in the 1800MHz band to be offered in the 4G (technology-neutral) auction scheduled for 11 November. CAT’s board held an urgent meeting after its build-transfer-operate (BTO) mobile licensee DTAC advised the state agency that it had agreed to unconditionally hand over 5MHz of an idle 25MHz of 1800MHz bandwidth. Sanphachai Huvanan-dana, CAT’s acting CEO, confirmed that the board approved the transfer plan. However, TelecomAsia writes that question marks remain over how the two 15MHz concession blocks will be made contiguous – as this requires further agreements between operators to shift spectrum ranges – whilst it is anticipated that the government may effectively compensate CAT by handing it a free 4G licence on the remaining unused 20MHz of 1800MHz frequencies.